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The Slovak University of Technology Faculty of Informatics and Information Technologies (STU FIIT) in Bratislava will test the readiness of Slovak roads for the deployment of intelligent and interconnected transport within a pilot project for the Slovak Republic Ministry of Transport and Construction. The Faculty has signed a Contract with the Ministry of Transport.

The FIIT researchers will test the sensory readability of horizontal and vertical traffic signs on selected sections of roads in the capital of the Slovak Republic, motorways, roads of the classes I, II, and III. They will repeatedly take measurements on agreed road sections to determine different light and weather conditions. All measured data will be assigned a satellite navigation position marker with information on the measurement accuracy, information on the measured speed of the vehicle passing the mark, and the signal intensity of the data line within the selected 4G or 5G access technology (depending on availability).

The project output will be analysis of the findings, focused on the reliability of detection of various types of traffic signs on Slovak roads and using the sensors and methods standardly used in modern cars, thus proving a basis for advanced assistance systems or autonomous driving at any of the required levels. According to the Contract, the government will, in addition to the analysis, also receive a complete set of data for further possible research or otherwise conceived analysis.

„In recent years, the number of new cars able to read some traffic signs on the roads has increased. So far, it is just additional information for the driver, who is then responsible for adjusting the driving mode of the vehicle. Soon, however, adaptive cruise control and the cars which promise the ability to drive autonomously at the third level will become more and more controlled by automated brand reading. If to rely 100% on machine reading in autonomous cars, we must first be able to clearly identify the current state of the road markings and whether modern cars are able or unable to read and understand it, ” says Ing. Marek Galinski PhD., the STU FIIT project guarantor working in the Automotive Innovation Lab Research Group.

„The quality of signs and their compatibility with the sensors has not been mapped in detail so far. I therefore welcome this project and expect it to bring very interesting data. In the future, transport will move towards greater automation, so we should work to adapt our infrastructure as much as possible, thereby simultaneously increasing road safety," said Andrej Doležal, Minister of Transport.

”Since its establishment, STU FIIT has been very strongly oriented on application of the latest technologies in practice, providing the attained innovations to private companies as well as public and governmental institutions. Cooperation with public and governmental institutions, including this project, makes our research instantly beneficial for the whole society. The development of autonomous transport projects is essential for this country on its way towards the deployment of intelligent means of transport in our roads on a large scale. I am very glad that such projects are being implemented in cooperation with our Faculty,” concludes Prof. Ivan Kotuliak, the STU FIIT Dean.